Question: There is nothing stronger than habit. A person’s nature, his essence, is a desire to receive that works according to a certain program: maximum enjoyment with minimum expenditure of energy. But since a person’s character cannot be changed, does it mean that habits cannot be changed either?
Answer: It is very, very difficult. This requires serious motivation, wanting to acquire some new imposed, induced habitual actions, deeds, and tastes.
Indeed, habit is second nature. We receive only some basic characteristics from nature and everything else is formed through the influence of the environment.
Comment: But we know from the science of Kabbalah that it is impossible to change a person’s nature.
My Response: But inside nature itself—what I strive for, love or hate—everything happens within the framework of our common egoism. We are programmed by parents’, society’s, and friends’ attitudes toward us.
Question: We know that a habit is an action that is directly related to pleasure or suffering.
For example, children do not like to brush their teeth, but this habit can be developed in them if you give them some kind of reward for this, which gives pleasure. When you no longer give anything for it, the action itself becomes a pleasure since without brushing teeth one suffers.
So, through pleasure and suffering, can we develop a habit in a person, but still not change his nature?
Answer: We cannot change nature. Within the framework of our nature, we can simply manifest it in certain ways, but nothing beyond that. In general, nothing is done without a reward. Nature or us, or society, something should set us to act a certain way.
Question: Can bad habits be eradicated by suffering?
Answer: Not necessarily through suffering. Any habits can be eradicated. It all depends only on how much we really want to and know the way to do so.
From KabTV’s: “Spiritual States” 6/25/21